Hi Fi News January 2021

Since its launch in June 1956 - two years before the commercial realisation of stereo - Hi-Fi News & Record Review has been delivering insightful reviews of the key products and technologies that lie behind our shared hobby... the passion of listening to music on the very best equipment available to the enthusiast. Every issue, Hi-Fi News delivers uniquely in-depth reviews of high-end audio equipment, including the best in vinyl replay and iconic vintage gear from the early days of audio. It is essential reading for all music enthusiasts.

United Kingdom
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13 Nummer

i detta nummer

3 min

Depending on when you pick up this latest copy of your favourite hi-fi magazine you’ll either be ‘celebrating’ the festive season or ringing in the New Year with a glass of whatever takes your fancy. All with due caution I hasten to add, though I am loath to turn my Welcome page into a public health announcement… Instead I will say this, and from us all at Hi-Fi News, we wish every reader a healthy, happy, Covid-free and music-filled 2021! So, as the hours of daylight slowly increase and the nights get shorter, and with the promise of a vaccine to guide our way, audiophiles across the land will be settling down for an evening’s music-making with their cherished LP collection or hi-res downloads via NAS or HD streaming service. And while…

1 min
cambridge clout

Although launched in 2018 as part of its 50th anniversary celebrations [HFN Nov ’18], Cambridge Audio continues to expand its Edge series. The latest addition to the flagship range (named in honour of company founder Prof. Gordon Edge) is a monoblock power amp claiming double the output of the Edge W stereo model. Priced £4000 each, the Edge M is rated at 200W/8ohm (350W/4ohm) and again utilises the company’s ‘Class XA’ technology – designed to offset the crossover point between NPN and PNP output transistors by applying a negative bias current. Also, twin toroidal PSU transformers are deployed in opposing symmetry to suppress EM interference. Both single-ended RCA and balanced XLR inputs are offered. Aesthetically similar to existing Edge components – including the versatile Edge NQ network streamer/preamp – the…

1 min
rare sonus faber

Sonus faber’s Il Cremonese ex3eme (£48,500) builds upon the design of its 2015 Reference collection Il Cremonese floorstander with technology from the company’s ex3ma concept model. Carried forward are the 180mm midrange and ‘Stealth Reflex’ bass drivers, now joined by a beryllium DLC (Diamond Like Carbon) tweeter and upgraded side-firing ‘infrawoofers’ – both informed by the ex3ma project – while the mid/high crossover network has been redesigned. Limited to just 50 pairs, the speaker’s five-sided cabinet is topped and tailed by aluminium ‘Dampshelves’, and sees Sonus faber bring back its premium Red Violin finish. Sonus faber SpA (Fine Sounds Group), Italy, 01592 744710; www.sonusfaber.com; https://finesounds.uk…

1 min
hi-fi news' nuggets

OPHIDIAN MKII British brand Ophidian has launched its 2nd generation M-series speakers, a trio of compact models that includes the £900 Minimo 2 and £1200 Mojo 2 standmounts together with the £2000 Mambo 2 floorstander. Cabinet sizes have increased only marginally and the SEAS 27mm fabric dome tweeter is retained, although the coated paper cone mid/bass driver is increased from 90mm to 115mm and now features a 25mm, 4-layer voice coil. www.ophidian.co.uk ELECTROCOMPANIET Courtesy of distributors Elite Audio, the Norwegian hi-fi brand Electrocompaniet is now re-available in the UK. Two main product strands are offered, including the ‘Classic Line’ of integrated, pre and power amps plus a CD player and streamer/DAC. This is joined by the ‘EC Living Line’ comprising a series of very smart-looking wireless multiroom speakers and streamers. www.electrocompaniet.com…

1 min
ferrum hypsos

The first product from Ferrum – a new hi-fi brand from Polish OEM outfit HEM Audio – is the €995 Hypsos. Described as a low-noise, high-efficiency ‘hybrid’ linear/switching power system, it offers an adjustable 5-30V DC output up to 6A current, and is supplied with a cable terminated to order to fit ‘the most commonly used DC inputs’. Operation is software-controlled via a front-panel LCD display showing voltage, current and power output – parameters can be set manually or users can select pre-configured settings for a list of supported devices. Additional features include ‘Sweet Spot Tuning’ – fine voltage adjustment to achieve ‘the best sound’ – and ‘4T Sensing Design’ which maintains very tight voltage regulation regardless of load. The Hypsos’ steel/anodised aluminium enclosure measures a compact 217x50x206mm (whd). Ferrum/HEM, Pruszków,…

1 min
made for the black stuff

‘A classic redefined’ is how German marque Lehmannaudio describes its compact Black Cube II (£600), an update on its entry-level Black Cube phono stage that launched the brand in 1995. Intended for use with both MM and MCs it boasts an outboard PSU and precision active gain/passive RIAA filter network. Four gain settings are on offer (+36dB and +46dB for MM; +56dB and +66dB for MC), plus a 16-step LF filter that’s ‘tunable’ from 7Hz-90Hz. Standard 47kohm, 1kohm and 100ohm input loads are included with custom loads also accommodated. The Black Cube II’s functional but robust alloy enclosure (in chrome, silver or black variants) is damped to combat vibrations while an upgrade path is offered via Lehmannaudio’s superior £350 regulated PWX PSU. Lehmannaudio Vertriebs GmbH, 01235 511166; www.lehmannaudio.com…